Oscar Picks 2015

By Glenn and Jake

It feels like just last year we successfully (and unethically) predicted the Academy Awards Best Picture winner.  This has been a huge year for films and an even bigger year for movies. In 2014 we saw crazy surrealism, measured proselytizing, shooting and a boy literally grow up right before our eyes.  Finally the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences listened to White America and refused to nominate any people of color for major awards unless you count Mexican Alejandro González Iñárritu or twee Wes Anderson.  On February 22nd, thousands of people will gather in front of their smart phones and illegally stream the 2015 Academy Awards, holding the device in one hand and a printed copy of this article in the other.  Watch out for paper cuts when you scream in exaltation at our correct prediction of Best Picture winner!


2015 Best Picture Nominees


Imitation Game/Theory of Everything


Glenn says... Who can keep these movies straight? Not me, and I’m straight myself, unlike the lead characters in these films.  Both are about troubled scientists who overcome a disability, based loosely on the story of Timothy McVeigh. 

Jake says... Everywhere you go these days everybody seems to be talking about Game of Theory.  All the nudity and dragons has America harder than a sodoku puzzle and wetter than your mom's pussy when she's watching Lonesome Dove.  This is a TV show so it has no shot.


Mortdecai


Glenn says.. Mordecai (sic) is this year’s dark horse candidate.  Its incredibly successful marketing campaign led to the famous unprecedented $700 million dollar opening weekend and even less precedented and less famous $800 million dollar closing weekend, all in the same month!  The film had to close early because America couldn’t handle any more...decai.  

Jake says... Mortdecai was a very surprising pick for the Academy. This nomination is more shocking than the time The Mountie used hid shock stick on Job Bush at the 2015 New Hampshire primaries.


Boyhood
Glenn says... Probably my favorite of the fifteen movies nominated this year.  As someone who used to be a traditionally gendered boy, seeing this movie reminded me of that time in my life, down to the detailed depictions of staying up late in IRC wrestling chat rooms.  Some people were taken aback because nothing explodes in the film, not even the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in 1995, but hopefully that bizarre exclusion won’t take away from the powerful anti-government message about growing up and the small moments that make our lives worth remembering.    

Jake says... This prequel to Parenthood is missing the heart of the original film: Steve Martin. Getting Zachary Braff was a great casting move, but making it a musical seems like a real blunder. Boyhood needs to go through puberty.


Birdman
Glenn says... Heard it took twelve years to film...felt like twelve years to watch!

Jake says... Is he a bird or a man? He's a Birdman. Michael Chrytron has done it again and this time it's personal, because this is a biopic. Chrytron is known for being ice cold in his crime epics, but this movie will give you frostbite.


God’s Not Dead/Heaven Is For Real/Saving Christmas
Glenn says... This movie, released in three versions, challenged a lot of Christians belief in how loosely you can define what constitutes a "movie."  There was a lot wrong with this film including the final fight scene between the AntiChrist (depicted by Greg Kinnear) and Hercules (depicted by Kirk Cameron) - especially baffling when you consider TV’s Hercules Kevin Sorbo was right there on set as a Key Grip! - but never underestimate the power of Christian movies amongst the liberal Hollywood elite.

Jake says... Not often does the Academy nominate three movies as one nomination, but I guess they did this time around. I'd like to look in their heads and see how they tick, you know. Just look at all of those wires and those gears turning, lubricating the bits that need it. I guess that's just the clock maker in me coming out. There might not be a god, but these movies prove that there are still quality films being churned out in Hollywood.


Selma
Glenn says... Making fun of Selma will get you virtually drawn and quartered on both tumblr and twitter, so don’t even think about it.  I know when to fold my hand and it’s whenever there’s a race card in it. Pass!

Jake says... I hated when the president of the Selma fan club murdered her.


American Sniper
Glenn says... One of the two “politicized” movies up for Best Picture this year, opposition and support have fallen along traditional ideological lines.  Iraqis and others of Middle Eastern descent have rallied in favor of the movie since it provides so many acting jobs for a group of people normally discriminated against in our racist society.  Meanwhile the Veterans of Foreign Wars famously burned an effigy of Clint Eastwood during last year’s CPAC in protest of what they called a “disgustingly pro-Bradley Cooper film.”  Controversy means $$$ but not Best Picture award. 

Jake says... American Sniper? What is this movie about: legendary roast master Jeffrey Ross? Seriously though, being hired as a murderer by the government should give everyone pause and make them reevaluate the system we are participating in and making movies glorifying it is despicable. Plus, having a cartoon cat named Buzzby telling Chris Kyle to shoot brown people is in poor taste.


Planes: Fire & Rescue
Glenn says... A fantastic film with a show-stealing voice performance by Marion Cotillard as Deandra, the rescue plane.  Most people will dismiss this "kids movie" out of hand, as if the things that children enjoy - sports, parties, having sex - have no value.  But I thought this had a much more nuanced depiction of combat, rescue, fire and mental illness than any this year's films.  The question everyone is wondering: will its overt anti-Semitism doom it before the Elders of the Academy?

Jake says... I would FIRE anybody who doesn't PLANes to see this movie and RESCUE anybody who is being sexually assaulted in front of me.


Our Picks
Glenn says... Most believe this is Boyhood's turn to win Best Picture, having failed to win during each of the previous 12 years it was nominated while in production.  But there were others that dealt with important political and social subject matter. Selma captured the intensity and drama of a very important historical period and its subject matter is still relevant today.  American Sniper was finally the breakthrough Iraq War movie that allowed us as a country to begin processing the complicated feelings left in its aftermath.  Planes: Fire & Rescue had planes who talked.  Ultimately the best picture will go to Mortdecai, who will then be promoted to #fulltimerogue.  See you on the red carpet! 

Jake says… For the first time in over 1200 years of film, I think the Academy is not going to award any movies a statue. It's a shame, too, because all of these movies were very funny. 

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